Letter: Supporting James for state Rep.

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To the Editor:This letter is to offer my endorsement of Kathleen James for State Representative to the Vermont Legislature.Most of my life has been spent as an artist and an educator. That is why I looked carefully at Kathleen James' background and ideas on education as she began her campaign.Kathleen moved to the Northshire in 1996 when her oldest daughter was six months old, after searching with her then-husband for a small Vermont community in which to buy a home, raise their children and put down roots. They chose Manchester primarily for its excellent schools and for its unique and flexible school choice option. When her daughters were young, Kathleen was an active volunteer on the local education scene, serving as a board member of Zion Preschool and Friends of MEMS. She was also an original board member, working on communications and public relations for the innovative Manchester School Fund, which in the early days of Act 60 raised several million dollars — above and beyond the basic taxpayer-funded budget — to avoid deep budget cuts and to fund ongoing programs at MEMS. This wide-ranging work led to her election to the Manchester Elementary-Middle School board. Following her divorce, her volunteer days ended but she stayed deeply involved with her daughters' education as a full-time working mom. Her girls graduated from BBA in 2014 and 2017 respectively, and are now working and attending college in Chicago and North Carolina.Kathleen has remained passionate about education and the power it provides to change lives, open minds, and provide equal opportunity for everyone, regardless of income. As a rep in Montpelier she will work to preserve the unique adaptation of school choice that has served the Northshire — attracting new residents and young families to live and work here, as it did for her. She will also support teachers.Recently, Kathleen was endorsed by the Vermont NEA, which is a measure of the remarkable skills she will bring to in the Legislature. Kathleen has an enormous energy, acumen, and a brilliant mind to offer to the debate. I believe Vermont will see exciting growth and development in all of its problem areas, and this will directly affect the lives of all its citizens.Pat Musick CarrManchester



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